In the current mag we have the best pictures yet of the German firm's new compact SUV, which will take on the British rival when it goes on sale next year.
Likely to be called the MLK, the new Mercedes was spotted testing by our spy photographers well ahead of its unveiling at the Geneva Motor Show next March. It will line up at the expo at the same time as the production version of Audi's Q5, first revealed at the Shanghai show last week. Behind the disguise, smart squared-off headlamps and a large grille dominate the front end, while chunky roof bars and increased ground clearance give it a purposeful look.
The muscular appearance is continued at the back with a pair of rectangular exhaust tips, a small roof spoiler and a large vertical tailgate which opens down to the rear bumper.
Inside, buyers can expect to find a useful sliding rear bench and high levels of luxury, including Mercedes' COMAND central control system. The newcomer shares its four-wheel-drive platform with the C-Class 4-Matic Estate. However, the SUV will be tuned for on-road handling rather than dedicated mud-plugging.
Ride quality should be impressive, while buyers will get to choose from a wide range of engines. This is likely to include the V6 petrol and diesel units found in the new C-Class saloon. Unfortunately, the premium compact SUV may never make it to the UK. Mercedes' 4-Matic system is currently unavailable here because of the high costs involved in re-engineering the transmission to suit right-hand-drive cars. That could prove to be a disappointment for fans of Mercedes' AMG performance brand, because the tuning division is expected to develop a rapid version of the MLK.